All of us Beardsmen wish we knew how to trim a beard like a master barber ourselves... Truth is...most of us don't. So we either fork over our hard earned cash and see a professional, or we attempt it ourselves (usually not the best idea).
Beard trimming is the #1 mistake made by Beardsmen all around the world! One slip and you can lose MONTHS of growth. And often times a mistake leads to many men shaving entirely and starting over. So if you want to learn how to trim a beard like a master barber...follow these guidelines....
How To Trim A Beard Like A Master Barber
1. Slow Down
NEVER attempt to trim any part of your beard if you are in a rush. Ever. Set aside a block of time dedicated to your trim and take it slow. One quick slip and you can be set back months. PRO TIP: We recommend setting 30 minutes of dedicated time if you’re just getting started.
2. Don’t Trim Wet
When your beard hairs are wet they straighten out significantly and will appear longer than they are when they’re dry. If you trim wet, when it dries it will shrink up and your beard will be uneven. Because of this, it is critical you properly dry your beard fully before considering any sort of trim.
3. Clippers vs Scissors
This comes down to personal preference and what YOU are most comfortable with. I prefer scissors as I love the control a pair of scissors provide. Yes, it will take a little longer to trim your beard, but I think we would all agree a few extra minutes is worth saving a mistake that could take months to fix. Again, take it slow.
4. Start Small
If you are looking to take 1/2” off your beard, start by taking 1/8” off and make a couple passes. This will allow you some room for error. You can always take more off, you can’t add it back! Recommended: Beard Boost
5. Style You Beard Before You Trim
Before you trim you want to style your beard as if you would any other day. Going through the same routine you normally do will ensure your beard is laying the way it does on a daily basis. For me I apply my beard oil and then butter, and comb it up (to separate the hairs) then comb it down into place. With the products in, my beard is much more manageable and thus requires the trimming of fewer hairs.
6. A Proper Neckline
***ATTENTION*** This is the single most common beard trimming mistake. Too many guys ruin their beards by trimming too high. Your jawline is NOT your neckline If you trim your beard on your jawline it will make it look like your beard shrunk and is entirely too small for your face. You want to trim your beard where your neck meets your head Here are a few examples of bad and good necklines to make this very clear:/
Very bad neckline. His bottom line is much to high and his cheek line is much too low causing his beard to look much too small for his face. This will only look worse as it grows out.
Look at how much happier he is!
Much better neckline here. Notice how it is trimmed where his neck meets his head and his cheek line is in a much more natural, higher position. His beard is much more proportionate and full.
7. The Stache
My general rule is: The bigger the beard, the bigger the stache. I feel it is important for there to be balance between the mustache and the beard. However: This is absolutely subjective. Choose what YOU like. I always advise using scissors on a mustache of any length. Take your time by evening out the ends. If you want it off your lip, simply take the scissors and cut what’s resting on your upper lip. For a shorter mustache, you can use a trimmer with a guide as an alternative. My advice is to always start with a number higher than you think you should just to be safe. Recommended: Live Bearded Mustache Wax
8. The Cheeks
Depending on how high your cheeks grow in, you may want to clean up your cheek line to create a little more of a defined beard. You want to create a line connecting your inner sideburns across to your mustache, but keep this line as high as naturally possible. A very common mistake is taking this line too low. I do not want you shrinking that beard into a chin strap so again take your time!
9. How Often?
Once you have your desired shape, regular maintenance will be much easier and the required beard trimming will be minimal. Keep an eye on it and trim the strays that take away from the shape. Just remember not to overdue it. If you continually trim you’ll never add any length! PRO TIP: Every 2 weeks is typically often enough to keep it shaped. If you’re looking to grow it out, we recommend 90 days without a trim to allow time for growth.
10. Made a Mistake?
Step away from the scissors! If you’ve made a mistake, our advice is to step away. DO NOT try to fix it on the spot if you are upset. Trust me, you'll likely make it worse. Simply step away for a bit and come back once you’ve settled down. PRO TIP: Don’t shave your entire beard because of a small mistake. Chances are most people won’t even notice. Take some Beard Boost and you’ll grow it back in no time.
See a Professional
If you don’t feel confident attempting this on your own, we suggest you see a professional barber for your first big trim. He or she should know how to trim a beard...but don't walk in blindly! Do your research first! You will want to find pictures of examples of the look you are going for and be very specific with what you want them to do. Lack of clear communication can lead to one of the mistakes we mentioned here even when you’re dealing with a professional. We hope you know how to trim a beard with confidence so you can save time and money, and always keep your beard on point! Whether you use our products or not, we are here to support you and answer any questions you might have. Whether it’s product related, styling related, or just about anything at all. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook. If you found this article helpful, hit the SHARE button so other brothers can learn how to trim a beard! As always, Live Bearded Brother!